October 2, 2012, 11:36 AM

Online marketplace Copious broadens its listings

The site enables sellers to peddle menswear and home decor.

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Fledgling online marketplace Copious today began allowing retailers to sell menswear, home décor and art-related items. The site had allowed sellers to peddle only women’s fashion and accessories.

Copious puts a social spin on the online marketplace model by letting shoppers like products and to follow other shoppers and sellers.

When a shopper logs on to the site she sees a Pinterest-like feed featuring items tailored to her based on her on-site actions, such as her likes and her general interests. The site prompts consumers to share the first time they visit the site, as well as her friends’ on-site behaviors. For instance, a shopper who has liked a number of posters and follows consumers interested in jeans will likely see items such as a large print of a butterfly and other pieces of wall art, along with other items such as jeans that she may be interested in. Below a photograph of each item is the item’s price, the seller’s name and the shopper’s friends who have liked the item. Copious developed its own algorithm for determining what to show each visitor.

Shoppers looking for a specific item can also browse the site via product categories like art, bags or men’s clothing, or use the site’s search box.

“We’re presenting an experience tailored to peoples’ interests,” says Jonathan Ehrlich, the site’s cofounder, who worked as Facebook’s head of marketing from 2009 to 2011. “We believe the one-size-fits-all retail model is broken.”

Expanding the site’s selection into menswear and art is the next logical step for the site as it looks to expand the number of products it offers and increase its user base, he says. The site, which launched in January 2011, has “hundreds of thousands” of users, he says, without providing more detail.

Sellers are generally small retailers similar to those that sell on Etsy. However, Copious is open to anyone. The marketplace doesn’t charge a listing fee but takes a 9.5% cut of each transaction.  

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